3-Day Adventure Part V
When I was gainfully employed I spent most Sundays lounging around the house avoiding the thought that yet another Monday would soon arrive. Inevitably, sometime between 6:00 and 8:00 p.m. it would slowly begin to take over my mind and the list of must-dos for the coming week would replace the thoughts of nothingness.
Life is so different these days. I have very few must-dos on my list and I’m often unaware of the passing of days. That’s why when I realized we were only about 20 minutes away from home I feared that our mission of fun would be over and we’d be back to twiddling our thumbs at home sooner than we wanted. After a quick meal of Puerto Rican-style tacos it was decided that we’d pretend we were hours from home and we’d stay in another motel. This one was worse than the first one but if I had to sacrifice to get to our last stop on Monday—El Yunque—then sacrifice I would.
It was early Monday morning and we were up and in traffic with the commuters. After a really fun hour of driving in the opposite direction of where we were going and circling a mountain, we got to our destination. We drove up the mountain to a look out point. I don’t remember how many flights of stairs it took to get to the top but enough to require about 10 minutes of recovery time for me. It was worth every step to see the view of the mountains and the ocean in the far off distance. I was in yet another heaven.
We continued on to find the trail that would take us to the waterfall. We found it and started our hike. The hike itself was beautiful, filled with a brook, a bridge, a stone path and the most brilliant greens I’ve ever seen. It reminded me of the quote, about focusing on the journey, not the destination. If we had hurried through the trail we would’ve missed so much.
After about 20, maybe 25 minutes of hiking we arrived at La Mina waterfalls. I, once again, felt like I was in heaven. There was a bridge connecting the two different trails that led to the falls. I crossed the bridge, climbed on the rocks and started my way towards the falls. Not having connected the water aspect of waterfall I hadn’t thought to change into my swimsuit and had worn jeans. As Mr. Friendly got ready to join everyone else in the water, I cursed myself for wearing jeans. I moved closer to the water, each time hesitating because the thought of wet jeans and a 30 minute hike back up didn’t sound fun at all. Then I thought about it and I knew that I would regret not having jumped in the water much more than those 30 uncomfortable minutes, so in I went. The water was cool but it didn’t take long to adjust to the temperature. It was amazing!
We swam and took pictures but because we were on a deadline, it was soon time to go. We gathered our things and decided to take the trail on the other side. With my jeans swishing and my shoes squeaking we hiked. Mr. Friendly made conversation with others on the trail while I read the informational signs. I soon remembered that a hike down is always easier than a hike up and proved to myself just how out of shape I really am.
Eventually we made it to the end of the trail only to realize that we were at the wrong parking lot. Our car was parked in the parking lot up the mountain. Being the gentleman that he is, Mr. Friendly offered to climb up and pick me up. I didn’t hesitate to accept his kindness.
We reluctantly headed towards home. Though we were looking forward to hot showers and a good night’s sleep in our own beds, we were sad that we were leaving our days of adventure behind.